On Language by Noam Chomsky
Chomsky's Classic Works Language and Responsibility and Reflections on Language in One Volume

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Synopsis

Restoring to print two of Chomsky's most famous and popular books in one omnibus volume, On Language features some of the noted linguist and political critic's most informal and highly accessible work, making it an ideal introduction to his thought.

In Part I, Language and Responsibility, Chomsky presents a fascinating self-portrait of his political, moral, and linguistic thinking. In Part II, Reflections on Language, Chomsky explores the more general implications of the study of language and offers incisive analyses of the controversies among psychologists, philosophers, and linguists over fundamental questions of language.

"Language and Responsibility is a well-organized, clearly written, and comprehensive introduction to Chomsky's thought." —New York Times Book Review

"Language and Responsibility brings together in one readable volume Chomsky's positions on issues ranging from politics and philosophy of science to recent advances in linguistic theory... The clarity of presentation at times approaches that of Bertrand Russell in his political and more popular philosophical essays." —Contemporary Psychology

"Reflections on Language is profoundly satisfying and impressive. It is the clearest and most developed account of the case of universal grammar and of the relations between his theory of language and the innate faculties of mind responsible for language aquisition and use." —Patrick Flanagan
 

About Noam Chomsky

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Noam Chomsky is Institute Professor (retired) in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. James McGilvray is Professor of Philosophy at McGill University, Montréal. He has written a general introduction to Chomsky's work (Chomsky, 1999) and edited and contributed to The Cambridge Companion to Chomsky (2005) and the second (2002) and third (2009) editions of Chomsky's seminal Cartesian Linguistics (Cambridge University Press). He has also published several articles on the philosophies of language and mind that defend in various ways the methods for the study of language and mind developed and endorsed by Chomsky and other internalist 'biolinguists'.
 
Published July 26, 2011 by New Press, The. 269 pages
Genres: Education & Reference, Literature & Fiction, Law & Philosophy. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for On Language

The New York Times

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Indigenous languages, for instance, often require specifying where things happen in relation to mountains and rivers, with a precision linked to the environment the language is spoken in.

Apr 06 2012 | Read Full Review of On Language: Chomsky's Classi...

The Guardian

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When Daniel Everett went to live among the Pirahã people in the late 1970s, he was committed to two sets of orthodox beliefs.

Dec 06 2008 | Read Full Review of On Language: Chomsky's Classi...

Publishers Weekly

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Challenging Noam Chomsky, Steven Pinker, and other partisans of “nativism,” which holds that certain kinds of knowledge are hard-wired into us (e.g., Chomsky’s “universal grammar” underlying all languages), linguist Everett (Don’t Sleep, There Are Snakes) argues that language is a pra...

Jan 09 2012 | Read Full Review of On Language: Chomsky's Classi...

Los Angeles Times

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Here is what he says at the end of a lucid review of a book about Chomsky's contribution to modern linguistics: "Anyone put off by the political overtones of 'Chomsky's Revolution,' remembering that Chomsky is a bit of a Marxist firebrand, might like to consider that there may well be a logical r...

Mar 27 1986 | Read Full Review of On Language: Chomsky's Classi...

Project MUSE

Chomsky’s On nature and language (ONL) advocates‘studying language asa natural object, a cognitive capacity that ispart of the biological endowment of our species, physically represented in the human brain and accessible to study within the guidelines of the natural sciences’ (ix).

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Project MUSE

In the former category, there is nothing specifically about parameters—something along the lines of, say, Baker 2001, by, say, Mark Baker, for example4 —nor is there mention of what Lyons (1970) considered C's signal contribution to linguistics, viz., formalization of theory and concepts, nor, re...

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